Wherever the Daily Grace host went at Anaheim Convention Center, where the biggest stars of YouTube gathered for the fourth annual summit, hysteria followed. And as the rest of the industry grappled with bridging the gap between YouTube and TV, Helbig used the spotlight to announce her own possible solution.
Helbig and real-life BFFs Hannah Hart and Mamrie Hart (no relation) are working on Camp Takota, a full-length feature film that will be released this winter by video-hosting site Chill. It’s a natural extension of the trio’s on-camera and on-stage collaborations over the last couple of years, capping off a successful year that included a crowdfunded tour.
The movie is about three friends who go back to their childhood summer camp as counselors. Mamrie said it was inspired by the four summers of college she spent working at an all-girls camp.
“The fourth year, I wasn’t going to go, but then my boyfriend dumped me and I didn’t want to see any dudes so I went back,” Mamrie told the Daily Dot.
With the production, Chill plans to cater to the intimate fanbases the trio have amassed—the crowds who lined around the convention center for their meet-and-greet session and panel. By signing up for Chill, fans will receive behind-the-scenes photos, exclusive videos, blog posts, updates on production, and potential access to the stars. Already thousands have signed up.
Marc Hustvedt, Chill’s head of entertainment, said Mamrie’s concept for a camp movie fit perfectly with a script that was going around with producer Michael Goldfine, who just worked on comedian Kevin Hart’s film, Let Me Explain.
“It all just came together,” he said. “I’ve been watching their careers flourish. They all have a natural community that they take care of and support so well, and I admired their talent as actual performers, so taking that to the big screen and doing a full feature narrative, with full characters and lines, feels like a nice natural step for them.”
Chill releases movies online direct to consumers, which Hustvedt said is the perfect platform for YouTube’s big three. “Their fans want to instantly buy it instead of being like, ‘I hope it comes to Switzerland’ or ‘Why is the movie not in Japan?’” he said.
For a time after its release, Camp Takota will only be available on Chill’s site, but Hustvedt said after that, the company wants to take it to TV or do a theatrical run.
“If you’re taking any business angle on this it’s that the talent is incredibly empowered here,” he said. “The artists make the bulk of every dollar, because they’re bringing their community with them. We had to start marketing the second it launched because there’s so much gold coming out of pre-production, production, and of course, all kinds of goofing around videos on set.”
And if these three are good at anything, it’s goofing around and creating gold.
Photo via Chill/Tumblr